A 2-1 loss to Arsenal at the Emirates on Wednesday evening has sent Aston Villa to their fourth defeat of the 2022/23 Premier League season.
Villa sport a 1-0-4 record through five matches and sit 19th in the league table before action on Thursday.
Arsenal entered Wednesday as the only club with a 100% Premier League record and opened the scoring in the 30th minute when Gabriel Jesus scored from a rebound in the box.
Lucky to be down only one goal in the 74th minute, Villa brought the match level when Douglas Luiz curled a corner around Arsenal keeper Aaron Ramsdale.
But it took less than three minutes for Villa to concede again as a collection of defensive follies led directly to Gabriel Martinelli’s winner in the 77th minute.
Manager Steve Gerrard said post match: “I thought the lads’ effort and what they gave to the game was there – that was clear to see. We’ve given an awful lot.
“We wanted to be in this game at the final stages, we wanted to make it uncomfortable for Arsenal, but then we go and get moments wrong, defensively, again. We’ve conceded two poor goals because we haven’t got the detail of defending right.”
Aston Villa: lack of quality going forward
While Villa were an improved side defensively, they still struggled to create chances offensively at Arsenal on Wednesday.
Gerrard’s men generated an expected goals (xG) rating of just 0.36 and failed to maintain meaningful possession at any point in the match. Other than a handful of wide runs from Ollie Watkins and Leon Bailey, Villa never looked a threat.
Luiz’s goal, for all intents and purposes, was a fluke. Direct from a corner? That’s 0.00 xG. You can’t count on those types of goals to win games.
And to add insult to injury, Luiz could leave the club before the transfer deadline on Thursday. Arsenal are reportedly interested in the Brazilian.
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